posted on Tuesday, August 13, 2013 4:40 PM
Las Cruces, NM, False Alarm Fines Now in Effect, Enhanced Call Verification too
A Las Cruces, NM, ordinance regulating alarm systems for homes and commercial businesses went into effect in January, and the enforcement of fines began on August 1, 2013.
For months, city police and fire department officials had been trying to develop a new ordinance that creates notably stricter penalties for chronic false alarm reports.
"A significant portion of our limited resources are wasted responding to false alarms," said Las Cruces Police Department Lt. Kevin Renn. "This new ordinance is designed to reduce the number of false alarms."
However, the total number of alarm calls last year dropped 9 percent from 2011 after the Mesilla Valley Regional Dispatch Authority implemented new procedures requiring two calls — to property owners and to alarm companies — to verify the legitimacy of an alarm.
"That's an indication that the direction we'll be going to will be effective," Renn told the council on Jan. 22. The two-call verification method will continue to be used with the new ordinance.